Monday, January 2, 2006

Superfluous Medical Studies Called Into Question

The Washington Post asks "Do we really need to be studying that again?"
A finding has to be reproducible to be believable. Only if different scientists in different places do the same study and get the same outcomes can physicians have confidence the finding is actually true. Only then is it ready to be put into clinical practice.

Nevertheless, one of medicine's most overlooked problems is the fact that some questions keep being asked over and over. Repeated tests of the same diagnostic study or treatment are a waste -- of time and money, and of volunteers' trust and self-sacrifice. Unnecessary clinical trials may also cost lives.

All this is leading some experts to ask a new question: "What part of 'yes' don't doctors understand?"
Technorati Tags: Medicine, Clinical Studies

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Like John Kerry, some of these studies are a matter of nuance.

In all seriousness, some studies are essentially reiterations of other studies with one variable different (cardiology or cancer RCTs), furthermore many studies are industry sponsored so when all you have is industry sponsored trials, repeated results is what you get.

Perhaps if we said no to redundant sounding studies when they want us to be a site for $$$.

Alternatively a similar study may unmask an unforseen result (CAST and PVC supression).